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Mailbag: How To Manage The LBs If Lee Is Out? Needs At OT & LB?
WEST CHESTER, OH
With Sean Lee out for a few weeks, why not move Damion Wilson to WLB? I really like Wilson's instincts, speed and striking ability. Aren't those the traits of a WLB? Then they can keep Hitchens at MLB and not have to overuse Jaylon Smith.
Bryan: I wouldn’t say that his instincts are his strength. His physicality along with his ability to run are his best traits. I do agree with you about the need to protect Smith. Justin Durant and Justin March-Lillard give you options, as well. Where they decide to put Hitchens will be key and my gut says they put him in Lee’s spot.
David: We’ve seen Wilson’s role grow over the last year, but it sure seems as though the coaches are reluctant to ask him to play Mike or Will linebacker. My guess is that’s because he has often shown lapses in coverage – which is a problem if you’re playing three downs. I certainly thinks Jaylon Smith needs some help, but I’m guessing Justin Durant gets the first crack at that job if Sean Lee can’t go.
With the huge hole left by Tyron Smith and Sean Lee, and the obvious injury history for both, is it a safe bet to say that this team needs to address offensive line and linebacker in the near future or the offseason? The difference in play when those players are on or off the field is far too obvious, and as a fan you can just about bank on them losing time each year.
Bryan: It’s funny that we tend to forget since Lee moved to WILL that he’s missed fewer games. Smith has played through more injuries than you will ever know. As positions to address -- sure I’ll go with you, but to say they need to address it because of those two is not accurate at all.
David: I know he has been battling various problems, but I’m not buying into the hype that Tyron Smith is injury prone. He’s got some things that I bet he’ll want to have taken care of in the offseason, but he has missed just four of 108 career games as a result of injury. Sean Lee’s injury history is a bit longer, and it certainly prompts you to think the Cowboys could use some extra playmakers at linebacker. They don’t currently employ a linebacker who doesn’t have some uncertainty around him in the long-term.Read